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Seven-Fruit Charoset from Surinam

by Irma Robles Cardozo

This special Passover recipe comes from Judy Cardozo Tenenbaum and Debby Cardozo Smith, who received it from their mother, Irma Robles Cardozo, who grew up in Surinam. Later while living in New York with her husband Bram, who served as Hazan at Congregation Shearith Israel, word of her charoset recipe spread widely, making an appearance in The New York Times as well as in the book Jewish Holiday Cooking by Joan Nathan, who quotes their mother as follows:


“On the morning before Pesach, a stream of people would appear at our door, holding containers and sheepish looks: ‘Could we have some of your charoset?’ they would ask. We would bring them into the kitchen where generous scoops were doled out from the large, simmering pot. In those days, before the new age of Passover convenience foods, Marc Levi a Surinamese friend of our parents, would come over help us grate the coconut.”


Ingredients


Unsweetened coconut 8 ounces

Chopped walnuts or grated almonds 8 ounces

Sugar ¼ cup

Cinnamon 1 tablespoon

Raisins 8 ounces

Dried Apples 8 ounces

Dried Prunes 8 ounces

Dried Apricots 8 ounces

Dried Pears 8 ounces

Cherry Jam 4 ounces

Sweet Red Wine


Directions


Combine everything except the jam and wine in a pot. Cover with water and simmer over low heat. Periodically, add small amounts of water to prevent sticking. Cook at least 90 minutes. When it is cohesive, stir in the jam and let stand until cool. Add enough sweet wine to be absorbed by the charoset and chill.


The recipe can also be found here on Jamie Geller's website:

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